Sunday, October 31, 2010

Prayers for B-Dawg

I just received a call from B-Dawg's vet, and it turns out that he has a legitimate excuse for not posting anything.  He has worms.  I should have known, as this would be a perfect explanation to why he's been dragging his butt across the rug at work for the past couple of weeks.

The vet also expressed concern over B-Dawg's temperament and suggested that maybe he should be put down. I told him that we, the staff, have decided to stick by our parasite ridden compatriot, and we will never have him put down.  The vet then suggested that maybe we should consider having B-Dawg neutered.  What do you guys think?  Should we do it?


Saturday, October 30, 2010

Thought Provokers

For the past year or so, I've been quite troubled by a few logical inconsistencies I've noticed in life.  I've struggled to either find an explanation to them or to cope with them, but to this point, I have found little success with either.  I now turn to you, the faithful reader, for help.  If you can explain any of these, I will forever be indebted to you!

1. Why is "Palindrome" spelled backwards not "Palindrome?"  Couldn't they have come up with a more fitting word?
2. Why is there only one word that means "Thesaurus?"
3. Why don't British people have accents when they sing?  Seriously...Where do they hide the accent?
4. Goose --> Geese.  Mongoose --> Mongooses.  What the Hell happened to "Mongeese?"


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

This Week's Contest

In a ongoing, and purhaps futile, effort to raise the moral caliper of THE STAFF, I propose another contest for tomorrow. This week's challenge will to make it thru the day without making a disparaging remark regarding another person. So Thursday will be NDR (non-disparaging remark) day, followed by the popular "F" free Riday. This will likely be harder then I anticipate, at least for me, but I am hoping to make it past last week's 10 hour mark (half of which I was asleep). Partipants, please confess the time and circumstance of your guilt upon caving in to the urge to label a fellow human being a lug nut. - SN

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

snl - adam sandler & chris farley - schmitts gay beer.mpeg

Criminal Record

Alright...It's time to think.  Today, I will pose a question, and I hope you'll comment with your thoughts.

If someone were to tell you that you were definitely going to be arrested in the next year, what would you bet the crime would be?  There's no need to confess to past things you've done and are on the lam for hoping not to be caught.

Me personally...If I knew I was going to be arrested, I would assume that I would be held in contempt of court while fighting a parking ticket or other small violation...followed closely by racketeering and extortion.


Monday, October 25, 2010

Beverage Selection

When we go to the bar and try to flag down the bartender, we as men always face an interesting choice.  In fact, it can set the tone for the entire outing.  A man's drink selection determines how he will be viewed by women, and it can even signal his status as the alpha male of the bar to deter other male challengers.  There is a delicate tradeoff with any choice that you can make.  A manly drink can impress a girl, but it can also lead her to believe that you can't be molded and shaped to her specifications.  An effeminate drink can result in a girl coming over to ask to try it, thus starting a conversation, but it can also raise questions about the drinker's sexual orientation, thus precluding conversation.  Both of these defeat the purpose of trying to meet people at bars.  Luckily, I'm here to help categorize some popular drinks so you can properly select your libation to display the traits you want.

I shall use a scale from 0 to Chuck Norris.  I do NOT recommend drinking anything with a rating near "Chuck Norris," as it will cause spontaneous combustion in us mere mortals.  Without further delay, here are some ratings:

Whiskey - 7 if on the rocks, 8 if neat.  These ratings are only valid if you can drink it without making a shot face.

Beer - 6 (4 if light beer).  A good neutral choice for most occasions.

Red Wine - 5.  This can be very useful to show a classy/sophisticated side.

Motor oil infused with habanero peppers - Chuck Norris-1.  Probably a bad idea unless you have a low health insurance deductible.

White Wine - 2.  Dangerously low.  I would steer clear.

Martini - 6.5.  This has the benefits of both whiskey and red wine.  The score displays the dichotomy.

Appletini - 9.  I have it on good authority that some very very manly men have had these in their lifetimes.

Virgin Shirley Temple - .3.  Avoid at all costs.

USA Megyn (Hot spiked apple cider) - 8.5.  No explanation needed...Badass to the max.

Corona - 0.  Go with the Virgin Shirley Temple.

While not complete, this list should provide decent guidance.  If there is a drink you'd like to inquire about, leave a note in the comments section, and after I run it through my multidimensional rating model, I will post a score.


Million Dollar Idea

It's so simple.  I figured it out.  I was back at the trough at work eating candy corn, and I thought to myself, "What's better than corn plain?"  Completing this little call and response, I said, "Corn on the cob!"

Ladies and gentlemen, children of all ages...I present to you the latest and greatest MSG brainchild:
Candy Corn on the Cob!

I implore you to think of the possibilites.  You could eat it or you could harvest it and sell it at a ridiculous profit because demand will be astoundingly high!  If you dry it out, you could take it off the cob and pop it into candy pop corn (which I imagine would taste like caramel corn?).

What other suggestions do you have as to how I could market and use this miracle product?  Most creative idea wins!


Sunday, October 24, 2010

Blogging things

So I am blogging. Last night I went to Washington D.C. We started drinking at 6 pm and then went to the bars at 1 am. Upon getting back from the bars at 3 am, there was a guy passed out on the couch who had peed himself. We stayed up until 7 am. Next I slept for a couple hours. From 9 am until 1 pm I sat there watching TV, I also ate a breakfast burrito - it was pretty good. I left DC around 1 pm and arrived home in NJ around 4:30 pm. Now I am tired. This is the end of my story about last night and today. ES


On my drive to upstate NY this weekend, I must have been on the road with hundreds of quasi-Mennonites. I say this because while they clearly embrace turn of the century technical advances (evidenced by the fact that they were driving), they refused to accept, utilize, or even merely acknowledge cruise control.  The number of times I would pass someone only to have them fly by me a few miles down the road before I overtook them again is astounding.  Seriously, their speedometer readings were more inconsistent than Mel Gibson's temperament!

Normally, I would say that is a sufficient rant for what happened.  In this case, however, if I were to do that, I would not be doing justice to the transgressions of one driver in particular.  She was driving a white Cadillac SRX, and while I don't know her name for sure, I'd bet my bottom dollar it was "Crapsack McNumbnuts," so that's what I'll call her from now on.  Anyway, when I first encountered Crapsack, she was attempting to pass a truck in a 65 zone.  I can't explain this phenomenon, but I noticed that whenever she was passing trucks, she would drop her speed to the a 65 zone.  Anyway, after she finished passing the truck, she stayed in the left lane going 60.  I went into the right to pass her.  After I pass her, she flies by me (had to be going 80) before dropping down to 60 again to pass another truck.  Same thing happened after she passed this truck.  The third time this was about to happen, I sped up to get in front of her so I wouldn't get stuck behind her again.  When I looked in my rear view mirror, Ms. McNumbnuts was flipping me off!  Let's just say that had the contest still been going on, I would have been eliminated right then and there...


Thursday, October 21, 2010

Timeless Wisdom

When I think of fourth grade, I think of learning about New Jersey's counties, beginning to play the cello, pitching for the Panthers in Little League, and perhaps most unbelievably, the Buffalo Bills winning games.  Beyond that, my memories of that time are somewhat nebulous.  There is however one recollection that stands out in my mind with incredible vividness.

After lunch and recess, Mr. Powell would read Roald Dahl books out loud to the class.  One day, before he began to read a chapter from Boy, he shared an adage that has stuck with me forever since.  He asked us how many of us thought we were mature.  Nearly immediately, twenty or so ten year old hands shot enthusiastically into the air.  He then asked us what maturity was.  No one had an answer.  After pausing for a moment, he looked at us and said, "Maturity is washing your hands after using the bathroom even if no one is around to know."

I bring this up because I witnessed someone at work (from a different office) today walk out of a stall (not the middle one) and right out the door without even faking a hand washing.  The world needs more maturity.


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Progressive Betting

For the past few months (or longer), B-Dawg's been trying to find ways to make lots of money with minimal energy.  He's so hellbent on this that he's willing to go through the trash to find cans so he can get a deposit.  He may try to deny it, but don't let him fool you...I've seen him in action.

Discussing this with him inevitably led to discussion about the movie "21" and eventually casinos in general.  After some theoretical discourse, I made some back of the envelope calculations to put numbers to the ideas.  By far, the most intriguing strategy we talked about at length was progressive betting.  To simplify the discussion, I will focus on Roulette because it is easy to determine the odds of winning (and more importantly, losing), and it has independent trials (unlike blackjack).

The basic betting strategy would involve betting a certain amount on every play regardless of a win or a loss.  In this case, playing any of the one to one payoff bets (1-18, 19-36, black, red, odd, or even) carries a 47.4% chance of winning (9/19).  Betting this strategy, one ought to expect to lose a little over five cents on the dollar.  In this case, the player is betting on each individual independent trial.

Progressive betting, on the other hand involves incrementally increasing one's bet after a loss.  The idea is that after a win (regardless of how many losses), if one doubles his bet after every loss, he will have increased his chip stack by the amount of the original bet.  Playing a progressive betting strategy, the gambler is essentially not betting on any one roll.  Instead, he is betting against a particular sequence of outcomes.  The reason is that the only way to lose is to lose a number of bets in a row to the point where you cannot double your bet again without exceeding the table maximum.  Since rolls are independent, the odds of losing x number of rolls in a row is equal to the odds of losing raised to the x power or (10/19)^x.

Example:  If the table has a $5 minimum and a $500 maximum, one can absorb six losses before exceeding the table max (the bet would be $320 on the seventh roll).  The odds of losing on seven consecutive plays is (9/19)^7 or 1.1%.  Thus 98.9% of the time, the gambler can expect to win $5.  While the player can lose a considerable amount of money, the odds are that they will not.  This strategy also reduces the expected loss per roll from 5.26 cents to 0.35 cents on the dollar (although the variance is considerably higher).

There are variations that can diminish the risk of a total loss at the expense of expected win frequency, and there are other games with somewhat more difficult odds to determine.  I have worked out similar variants for other games that are strictly superior to the one described above, so they certainly do exist (if there is demand, I would be glad to elaborate some in future posts).  The above was just the easiest example to describe what is really going on with progressive betting.


The Contest

Well, MSG, your stall selection post was certainly very interesting, and, amazingly, had wide spread appeal. However it's probably time to move on. I thought you might be interested in knowing that Elmo Spice, B-dog and I have challenged you in a contest. No, a Seinfield-style contest , but a Curse-Free Thursday Contest. Not that you have had any problems in that area, but the 3 of us have, and in an effort to clean up THE STAFF, we thought we would give it a shot for one day. This does run contrary to my effort to "lighten up" - you know, adopting the Stevie Nicks persona and getting a tattoo. (Ok, so it was only a henna tattoo. At least it was a step in the right direction. ), but I am willing to participate for the sake of the team. I hope you are reading this prior to the start (12:01 am), or otherwise one of us could win by default. You will have to be on the honor system. I can monitor Elmo and Bdog.  - SN

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Stall Selection

The other day, Elmo and Stevie approached me with great concern to warn me about a fairly well documented facet of my lifestyle, my affinity for the middle stall.  They told me that there is an extensive litany of scientific research showing that the middle stall is the least hygienic location in any given restroom.  They bombarded me with statistics and charts from accredited online universities to make their point.  For example, did you know that the middle stall is 23.7% (after rounding) more german (is that the right word?) than the furthest stall from the entrance and a whopping 54.1% ( rounding) filthier than the first stall?  They also informed me that as a result of this, every trip to the middle stall reduces life expectancy by 14 minutes.  For reference, one cigarette supposedly reduces life expectancy by 11 minutes.

I would like to take the opportunity to try to:  1. explain the supposed "Phenomenon of the Central Poopin' Stool" and 2. to defend my decision making as rational despite the medical evidence.

Upon being confronted with the figures about the relative death risks of each stall, my immediate thought was that it can't be true; casual observation shows that people are generally lazy, so why would the closest stall be the cleanest?  After splicing psychology and anatomy books together and analyzing day and night, it became clear that there is a higher saturation of shame than laziness in the average human body.  That would certainly explain it, as everyone will be walking past you if you're in that first stall, and that is unacceptable to most.

What about the puzzle of the last stall being cleaner than the middle stall?  After all, it ought to be the least shame-ridden office of all.  Additionally, this particular throne generally has some irresistible characteristics.  This stall is traditionally the Versailles of bathrooms: The Handicrapper.  I would have thought that the extra room it has for one to take his shirt off and kick his feet out would draw people to this stall like OJ Simpson to trouble.  Throw in the hand rails, and you have yourself a borderline regal setting to do your business.  In this case, the same human instincts discussed above manage to overpower the glory of these benefits.  Shame is no longer an issue once one opts out of the first stall, so laziness makes a fashionably late entrance to the potty party.  Thus, people, content to drive a Nissan, do not expend the extra effort to walk to the Mercedes.

You're probably asking yourself, "If he knows he's risking his life by venturing into a Hazmat zone so frequently, why does he keep doing it?  Is he daring, or is he indifferent?"  The answer is neither.  The bathroom in question is not your typical one.  Stall 1 has a seat cover dispenser that rips the seat covers.  That has to increase the filth factor exponentially right there.  Add in the "man left behind," the other day, and you have one dangerously tainted stall.  The third stall...well, I've seen some shady characters going in or coming out.  I'll say no more on that, but suffice to say, it's the seventh layer of germaphobe Hell.

To Elmo and Stevie, I thank you for your concern, but I hope you now understand a little more about where I'm coming from.


Celebrity Kinship

I woke up this morning with a pretty bad headache.  As I brushed my teeth and got dressed, it didn't abate at all (despite some cheap off-brand Advil knockoff pills).  When I got into the car, I noticed I was wearing a flannel shirt...Don't know how I didn't notice putting it on, but that's inconsequential.  Anyway, about a half hour later, my head was still pounding, and I realized, "I'm turning into Kurt Cobain."


Friday, October 15, 2010

Introduction to the Staff

This is an infamous crew that clearly needs no introduction.  It will however be introducted anyway:

Elmo Spice (ES):

B-Dawg (B-Dawg):

10090131.jpg b-dawg image by jessiicaa_95

Stevie Nix (SN):

Mary Samsonite (MS):

Middle Stall Guy (MSG):